Coach B's recruiting

While I think that JB does recruit some highly-ranked players (5 and high 4-stars), he does seem to have trouble closing the deal with the stars that he does pursue. Some possible (non-mutually-exclusive) reasons for this:
(1) He doesn’t cast a wide enough net among top players, meaning the chance of landing at least one in any given cycle are low;
(2) Such players are not his priority, so he doesn’t pursue them as vigorously as other coaches do;
(3) He doesn’t push hard for guys once a blue blood gets involved in their recruitment;
(4) He seems to actively avoid guys whose size and athletic upside makes them likely early NBA departures (related to reason 1);
(5) He won’t indulge players’ egos with respect to assurances re playing time/role or flexibility re visits etc;
(6) Other reasons(?)
Some of these may be quite legitimately defensible but taken together they make it really hard to stay competitive.

Anyway none of this is to say that I don’t like (most of) the incoming recruits or that i don’t feel pretty good about the current roster. Just that I sometimes wonder how much better the team’s ceiling would be if they landed a few of their first-choice guys instead. To use a non-controversial example (i.e. not Josh Jackson), how much better would everybody feel if we had Langford or Huerter coming next year?

This such a tired and incorrect argument. Everyone one of those players you mentioned were top 100 guys that people who followed recruiting new had a lot of upside. They had vastly better recruiting profiles than the MAAR, Dawkins, Doyle and Teske’s of the World.


Harbaugh is spending lots of money on his assistants as well you got to pay to be in those big races. At the end of the day I just have a hard time believing that Beilein isn’t capable of bringing in a class like Izzo is doing for 2016. People throw these narratives out that Izzo makes players worse, players don’t develop, not a lot of players go to the NBA but he’s still recruiting his butt off and in the hunt for those one and dones. Yes he failed in a couple prior years but that hard work is paying off in a different year.


The point wasn’t about paying assistants. I just don’t buy that hiring a guy because he has a connection to Ben Simmons and then blowing one year on Ben Simmons and doing nothing with him isn’t how you build a program. But it is how a lot of those sort of recruitments are handled.

I don’t really want to get involved in this argument because it gets out of control every time – and I haven’t read the whole thread.

But the point is that recruiting is important. Getting good players every year is important. Michigan has had a few misses over the last few years, but everyone does. Michigan also hit on a lot of guys that way outplayed their recruiting weight (like the 2013 class). That’s not an argument, that’s fact.

There was a time there for a few years when Izzo was chasing a bunch of five-star types and missed out and filled his classes out with three-stars. It happens, now he landed a terrific class in 2016 that could have a similar impact to Michigan’s 2013 class. Michigan had some bad misses and mishandled some recruiting situations over the last couple season… I am guessing every fan base in the country feels the same way.

There are very few programs that can land multiple five-star kids every year and they can all do so for different reasons. The better way to build a program that can sustain success in the Big Ten is probably by consistently landing 35-100 ranked level kids (like Simpson, Poole, etc.).

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MAAR/Dawkins were late adds… Similar to Caris. No one is doubting their lack in recruiting clout, but they both still have the potential to be pretty good players.

Just to set the record straight… here are the consensus ranks of the players Beilein has put in the NBA:
-McGary 28th
-Robinson 16th (he was ranked 118th with mid-major offers when he committed)
-Trey Burke 93rd
-Nik Stauskas 82nd
-Tim Hardaway Jr. 166th

For comparison, Teske is ranked 141st, Ibi Watson 214th, Xavier Simpson 69th, Austin Davis 180th, Jordan Poole 92nd.

Here are the rankings summary from UM hoops’s commitment posts:
Nik: “Rivals: 3-star, #106, ESPN: 89/100, 3-star, #32 small forward, Scout: 3-star”
Caris: “Rivals and Scout both list him as a three-star prospect while ESPN rates him at 87-of-100, or a two-star prospect.”
Timmy: “ESPN rates Hardaway at 93/100, which is good for the #28 shooting guard in the country and the 93rd ranked prospect in the class of 2010. Rivals and Scout both Hardaway as a 3-star prospect.”
GRIII: “He is rated a three star prospect by Rivals and the number 118 player in the class of 2012” and the comments included this question: “Am I correct that we were competing against Indy State, Valpo, Colorado and Missouri State for him?”

And my guess is that our current recruits will rise somewhat in the final rankings. Additionally, Caris was scooped up from Ohio University and Groce famously didn’t even call him to try to recruit him to Illinois, Trey was committed Penn State and only Cinci seemed to go hard after him when he decommited (and was on Ohio kid without an offer from OSU, unlike Teske), Timmy was offered by Minny and nobody else (though Florida showed some interest late). Remember, Wilson was offered by Gonzaga and Cal, among others, Chatman by Arizona, Watson by IU. Purdue wouldn’t offer GRIII when he committed. Really only McGary was a significant outlier in terms of offers.

If you want to argue that the current players won’t be as good as prior ones, fine, but to argue that Caris and Spike had different recruiting profiles Dawkins or MAAR, or that Trey was more highly ranked and recruited than Simpson, or that Timmy and GRIII had better offer sheets than Chatman and Wilson, or that Horford and Morgan were more highly ranked than Teske and Doyle – well, those are demonstrably incorrect assertions.

Again, we’ll see how things turn, and we could turn out to have been just lucky with our '12 and '13 classes, but we’re recruiting comparably to the way we did before the NC run in terms of rankings and offer sheets.


Here’s why we didn’t recruit Reynolds:

Rankings aside, and to echo Mr Unpopular above, I think it is fair to say that the UPSIDE of the current crop is well below that of the 12-13 classes. Which I suspect is part of the master plan, since less upside means less chance of early departure. Part of the reason I think Simpson was preferable to Goodin from that staff’s POV is that if Goodin ever acquired a consistent jump shot (a point of emphasis at Michigan) we’d have to worry about finding a new PG sooner rather than later. Simpson, who is generously listed at 5’11, probably isn’t going anywhere for 4 years.

That said, I am happy with the next generation of Michigan guards even if I will not shut up about Langford and Goodin and Huerter. But the recruitment of bigs since McGary has been a different story altogether… even rose-colored glasses can’t make our front court look halfway good. (The last two games against the dregs of the conference notwithstanding.)

The problem with Goodin was that he didn’t improve much during his junior year, wasn’t that impressive in AAU last summer. His ranking has been trending down. Simpson’s has been trending up. And we were in very good shape for Winston. They weren’t afraid of Goodin leaving early n the event that he developed a jump shot.

What about Coach Bacari? How much responsibility for our lack of bigs development and lack of recruiting Detroit falls on him?

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Well, our recruiting practices under Fisher and Frieder are what landed us on probation, and lead to a change in . . . our recruiting practices. I don’t think you saw many Detroit kids playing for Amaker. If you did, go ahead and tell us who they were. As an athletic department, we’ve decided we’re not recruiting kids who are character risks, academic risks, or want to get paid. So, you’re going to miss out on some big names that way. Seems to me that with the exception of last year - which included big injuries to Levert and Walton - the results on the court have been quite good.

Well, of course I wish Langford was coming in next year. But you’re conveniently ignoring the fact Battle took his spot, and he then committed to MSU. Maybe we should have created space for both, sure. But your argument seems to be we “can’t” land elite recruits, when the reality is Battle committed and (depending on the source) Langford wanted to commit.

Huerter? I liked him on film. Is he definitely better than Watson? I don’t know. We only wanted him for 2017, not 2016. So evidently the staff liked Watson better. I’m not sure Huerter was a “can’t miss,” elite prospect. He’s a shooter with some ball handling and passing ability - it looks like Duncan is already filling that role.

Again, not many of these five star kids are recruitable. We don’t pay players. We don’t look the other way when alumni pay players. We don’t have assistant coaches writing papers for kids. We don’t ask professors to doctor grades or offer easy courses for the players. And we’re not offering the sort of things Rick Pitino’s program offered to recruits, either. So that’s going to whittle down the available five star recruits pretty quickly. Yet some of them (Robinson, McGary, Irvin, Chatman) we’ve still managed to land.

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The cheating is pervasive, and involves most or all of the country’s top programs. Beilein absolutely is an exception, and I accept his approach.The WAY he wants his bigs to play, the skills he seeks from them, further diminishes the player pool. The good guys don’t always win, but–last year’s crazy injury debacle notwithstanding–Beilein HAS won. The thing is that about 12% of fans are congenital haters and going to complain no matter how good a team is–this applies to every school in the country. They get liquored up, they rag. Doesn’t matter; Beilein is here until he retires, and will go to the Hall of Fame.

Well Ben Simmons god father has been instrumental in their prior recruiting classes, maybe he’s actually a good recruiter.

I don’t think anybody has questioned guys have outplayed their recruiting weight. I guess the question that needs to be asked is if the program can have long term success with guys like Novak and Douglass who outperformed their ranking or do they need guys with higher upside when they achieved more on the court.

I am not necessarily sure there is a better way to build a program we witnessed last year with a couple injuries things fell apart and some of that is due to a dip in recruiting that couldn’t overcome those injuries and early entrants. Even this year people still aren’t sure about what this team can do losing large against their 3 best opponents and large underdogs against a tough B1G stretch. I guess we can revisit this after these next few games but I imagine 0-3 people will probably be more skeptical of how things are going.

We have this argument every month it seems. No matter how much we debate it, Beilein isn’t changing anything. I for one accept that we aren’t going to get many top recruits, but I still love that we have a coach who is willing to play by the rules and recruit people with high character. I can’t think of one player recruited by Beilein (Maybe Laval Lucas-Perry if transfers count) whose personality I disliked.


We should have taken a poll at the time of their recruitment. Our memories are different. I remember, in general, those people who follow recruiting loved Mcgary; onlyliked trey, Nik, and Robinson; were not too excited about Caris and Tim… The expectations were lower then. When I say people liked trey and Nik I mean the people who were most excited still assumed 4 year players. I don’t remember anyone talking NBA even after four years. If we compare recruitment profiles I think Chatman, Wilson and Simpson to be very “likeable” players but who cares. I didn’t particularly like Duncan before he started playing and he might as well have been ranked top 40 as far as I am concerned…Love Duncan now…The sentiment that there was a core of people following recruitment who knew Trey and Nik were going to be completely awesome is completely false!

Winston is a quintessential four year player. He is very skilled but slow-footed and lacks verticality. He may be 6-2 but he plays like a tough 5-11 PG.

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I’d just like to read a game preview that doesn’t say something like “Michigan faces a major uphill battle inside…” or “Michigan lacks the size and athleticism to stop ______'s front court, so they will have to shoot the lights out.” Shouldn’t be this way year in, year out.

Funny part about this that I’m actually using in something I’m writing now… Michigan has already faced two of the top five rebounding teams in the country.

Also when you prioritize shooting in recruiting, you generally need to shoot well to win. When you prioritize rebounding, you generally need to rebound well to win. It’s not necessarily a bad thing if Michigan has one of the top ten best shooting teams in the country if it needs to shoot well to win.


And it’s been working pretty well this year given that we’re 3rd in the country in Effective FG%.

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